Reality TV’s newest star, Allison Vest, is always willing to lend a helping hand — or with an ear, a nose, or an eye.
The new series ‘Body Parts’ – which airs Wednesdays at 10pm on TLC – features Vest, 42, an anaplastologist who combines science with art to create prosthetic limbs her Texas-based clinic for people with missing or malformed anatomy.
“I’ve always told my patients that you don’t know anything about us until you need us,” Vest said, referring to the obscure nature of her work.
“I learned about anaplastology during my master’s degree [at the University of Illinois at Chicago]. It was called biomedical visualization and you could branch into the prosthetic part. I majored in anthropology and art. I [originally] wanted to reproduce Artifacts for museums and such things. But that was boring.”
Each episode of “Body Parts” follows Vest as she meets with various patients who come to her for prosthetics that they need for various reasons. For example, Vest’s patient Jay Jaszkowski lost his nose to cancer and it has affected his self-esteem so much that he feels unable to date or socialize with him. So Vest helps make him a realistic looking prosthetic nose while he discusses with him how big or small it should be.
A 20-year-old woman named Ari Stojsik has a deformed ear and enlists Vest’s help to make a prosthesis with earrings. Vest’s patient, Victoria Mugo, lost her hands after contracting walking pneumonia that became septic, resulting in her hands being amputated. She wants to be able to use prosthetics to hold hands with her son and do simple daily tasks like picking up a fork. Daniel, a man who comes to Vest with a severe facial deformity, survived a brutal car accident. Meghan, a breast cancer survivor in her 20s, comes to Vest to get prosthetic nipples after getting one double mastectomy.
“I like the human part of what I do. I like listening to people and just learning their stories,” said Vest. “It doesn’t have to be her medical journey — just hearing about her life.”
Vest said eyes are her hardest to create.
“That’s what I call an orbital prosthesis. This includes the eyeball and lids because our eyes move so much. For me it’s very challenging to get what we call a static look. Hands are also very difficult. They’re just so big. Typically, I make ear and nose prostheses. That’s a much more manageable size.”
Thanks to the unusual nature of her work, Vest’s office looks like a mad scientist lab, she said.
“If I look to the left, there’s a toe hanging out over there. And looking the other way, part of an eye is in the works.”
As seen on “Body Parts,” many of them cry when Vest presents the end result to her patients after seeing themselves in the mirror with their newcomers.
“I am a person who wears my heart on my sleeve. I’m not good at holding back feelings, so I generally go along with them when they have feelings,” Vest said.
“I always realize they’re tears of joy.”
https://nypost.com/2022/04/12/real-life-dr-frankenstein-talks-about-job-in-body-parts/ dr Real-Life Frankenstein Talks His Job in ‘Body Parts’